J Thomas on May 17, 2011, 06:59:13 am
You say nobody mentioned the banking crisis until all of a sudden they all did? I wonder why.

For the same reason they don't say "Niggers don't read books.  Books are like kryptonite to a nigger"

The government was engaged in cover up, and the press complied.

Maybe because if they did, they'd be supposed to prove it? And they couldn't?

I knew there was a crisis on.  So did lots of other people..  I am sure I could have proven it.

You certainly could have proven it to your satisfaction. Could you prove it to their satisfaction in 2 minutes on TV? Surely they occasionally interviewed some professional economist who said what you say, who got his minute in.

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Was it the government or the banks that encouraged them not to report that?

The government abruptly changed the accounting rules to what bloggers sarcastically called "Mark to Myth" so that what was happening would not appear in the balance sheets of financial institutions, so the government was telling the banks not to report that, so presumably also telling the papers not to report that either.

I have two different theories about this.

One theory is that the USA was in deep trouble generally, and the Bush administration was looking for scams to temporarily boost us out of it. Clinton had successfully pulled off the dot.com scam, which got a lot of foreigners to "invest" in US companies, bringing in foreign exchange to the USA which we did not have to pay back when the dot.com boom went bust. Bush couldn't do the same scam over again, so he pushed loans against US housing as far as it would go. The theory is that the Bush administration knew it was a scam and they arranged the rules to make it look less like a scam because they needed the foreign exchange and had no legitimate way to get it. When they ran out of reasonable housing loans to peddle they encouraged the industry to continue to unreasonable housing loans. And when the whole thing fell apart they tried to say that the foreigners had just lost their money, no way to get it back, and it was time to leave the next president with the job of coming up with some third scam. By that theory, the whole thing was orchestrated by the government, so of course the government was central to the work of manipulating theews.

The second theory is that the Bush administration was mostly clueless about what was going on. They believed the banking industry. They did what the banking industry wanted. They did what you call "Mark to Myth" because the bankers told them it was a good idea and they were too stupid to notice. Then it fell apart, months too soon. Bush complains to his banker buddies, and they respond "Hey, you fucked up. You trusted us. But don't worry, just get us the money and by the time this blows over we, your friends, will own all the banks. And we'll make sure you get some of the loot, too." So the Bush administration keeps doing what their friendly banks tell them to.

I don't have the data to tell which it was.

So, mean or stupid? Which is worse?

Tucci78 on May 17, 2011, 07:10:50 am
Do they know that Major Hasan gave a power point presentation on why he was going to murder his audience?  Rather, they still think his motives were mysterious.

I looked that up. I thought, is this another urban legend like so many of the things Sam believes? The top link I found was the Washington Post. I guess they thought it was news.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/09/AR2009110903618.html

Two years before he killed people, Hasan gave a presentation arguing that the USA attacks muslim nations and ought to let muslims in US military ranks sit it out because they feel all conflicted about it. In a way this is reasonable.

You have been reading the mainstream media.  I, however, have read his power point presentation from beginning to end.  The presentation does indeed start off reasonable, but pretty soon works his way to death to all who refuse to submit to Allah.

"We love death", he tells his audience, "more than you love life".  Somehow the Washington post did mention that bit, but you have to read rather carefully.  They don't exactly lie, but they do give a general impression of bland reasonableness similar to your account.

Not only are you correct about his PowerPoint presentation (see http://tinyurl.com/3bf95l6; PDF), given - insofar as I recall - during the last year of his psychiatric residency, but it was very bad PowerPoint.

Major Hasan spent better than twenty years slurping off the taxpayers, and that was what the Army was getting from him toward the close of all that extremely expensive professional training?

If that's what he was focused upon at that time in his career, why the hell wasn't he assigned to the Army's Intelligence and Security Command, where his "special insight" into the Islamic whackjob mindset might have been far more effectively exploited? 

I understand that he was a lousy clinical psychiatrist anyway.  Gotta shudder when you imagine American PTSD patients in Walter Reed who were assigned to this gomer for their "care" while he was doing his residency.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 07:12:57 am by Tucci78 »
"I is a great believer in peaceful settlements," Jik-jik assured him. "Ain't nobody as peaceful as a dead trouble-maker."
-- Keith Laumer, Retief's War (1966)

ContraryGuy on May 17, 2011, 11:31:13 am

It so much fun reading sams posts, because they are so wild.  sams should be a thriller fiction writer; she would only have to keep posting, and such great fiction just happens.

Note that this was Sam, not Sams.


Ooops, I must have gotten my crazies mixed up. I do apologize.

ContraryGuy on May 17, 2011, 11:47:38 am
Recently a Muslim yelling "Allah Akbar" (God is Great) tried to seize the cockpit of a passenger plane.  He was subdued by passengers and flight attendants.

Mainstream media somehow overlooked to mention him crying "allah akbar", neglected all the ways that he fitted the profile,

Do you think the customers did not want to know?  In the mainstream media version of this event, it sounded like some random passenger urgently needed to go to the toilet, and thought there might be one in the cockpit.

Why do you believe these weird rumors when you don't believe the mainstream media?

Because I read extensive interviews with crew and passengers on the plane. 

And eyewitness accounts are always believable, accurate and without bias or prejudice, right?

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Similarly, are those who read the mainstream media aware that the Washington Snipers were Islamic terrorists - or that any of dozens incidents of random murder in the US were done by Islamic terrorists?

It got reported that they were islamic, and that they were black. Neither one got a lot of emphasis. I think a lot of people didn't want to hear it.

People tend to be really interested in why other people are shooting at them.  The mainstream media does not tell them.  To find out, have to read the blogs.

Wow! Blogs! Such mainstays of accurate and responsible journalism!  You know, I read on a blog somewhere that President Obama is really a space alien vampire, so it must be true and accurate, right?

Tucci78 on May 17, 2011, 01:47:14 pm
Wow! Blogs! Such mainstays of accurate and responsible journalism!  You know, I read on a blog somewhere that President Obama is really a space alien vampire, so it must be true and accurate, right?

So unlike his National Socialist Democrat American Party (NSDAP) predecessor in the Oval Office - good old Bubba the Irrumator - instead of getting sucked by White House interns, our Mombasa Messiah is doing the sucking?

Well, that accounts for the pale, unhealthy, diseased look among so many of our "poverty pimp" pseudopresident's underlings.....
"I is a great believer in peaceful settlements," Jik-jik assured him. "Ain't nobody as peaceful as a dead trouble-maker."
-- Keith Laumer, Retief's War (1966)

sam on May 17, 2011, 04:04:58 pm
You say nobody mentioned the banking crisis until all of a sudden they all did? I wonder why.

For the same reason they don't say "Niggers don't read books.  Books are like kryptonite to a nigger"

The government was engaged in cover up, and the press complied.

Maybe because if they did, they'd be supposed to prove it? And they couldn't?

I knew there was a crisis on.  So did lots of other people..  I am sure I could have proven it.

You certainly could have proven it to your satisfaction. Could you prove it to their satisfaction in 2 minutes on TV?

I could not prove that the sky is blue to their satisfaction, but it was not that complicated:  

If I was a talking head on TV in early 2006 I would have said:  

"Credit default swap prices are bets on debt failing to be repaid.  The current price of swaps shows that the smart money doubts that many mortgages are going to be repaid.  There are some trillions of dollars of mortgages and mortgage backed securities held by financial institutions - which are therefore walking dead, because what they own is not worth much."

That takes, I think, about twenty seconds.

The longer version is unsuitable for TV, but makes a quite short newspaper article:

Debts are backed by trust, property, income and faith  Trust had collapsed, property was collapsing, and the market prices of debt based instruments in the less regulated markets showed it.  

A financial business typically owns a lot promises by other people that they will be paid, and makes a lot of promises to other people to pay them.  So we were seeing a whole pile of promises that officially supposedly had value, but which were backed by other promises that those markets less subject to government regulation rated as worthless crap.

The underlying cause of the problem is that the typical purchaser of a million dollar house was a no-hablo-english wetback, whose job consisted of showing up a home depot for day labor.  I saw those purchasers.

Affirmative action meant lending to myth.  Mythical credit led to mythical balance sheets, which led to Mark-to-Myth accounting.

This worked as long as prices kept rising, so that houses could be flipped.  Each time the house was flipped the mortgage got paid off, and prices kept rising as long as they could find warm (though frequently dead drunk) bodies to sign the papers.  Once the music stopped, however, you had mortgages backed by grossly overpriced depreciating houses occupied by non English speaking wetbacks with no regular employment.

Some of the occupants were drunken bums who tended to crap all over the living room and use the front door for firewood, many of them were hard working people who attempted to improve the house to raise its value, but gave up when it became apparent that there was absolutely no way they could improve the house to the extent that selling it would pay off the mortgage.  A lot of the improvements lacked taste and skill.  Very few of the improvements had permits.  I saw one no-hablo-english unemployed big borrower do over his overpriced house with pink paint and marble.  The marble must have cost serious money, but it reduced, rather than increased, the value of the house, and if it had increased the value, there still would have been no way he could have flipped the house for a profit.

World wide, Basel was followed in most countries by torrent of politically correct lending and borrowing, which torrent continues today, though what is politically correct varied from one country to the next.  

Surely they occasionally interviewed some professional economist who said what you say, who got his minute in.

If they interviewed a professional economist, and he had said what I just said, he would never be employed again - just as you are unable to say that Lamarck proposed common descent in the sense that likenesses within families of species is because they are actual literal families, descended by blood or sap from a common ancestor, that Lamarck and others said all mammals have features in common because all descended by blood from one ancestor, that all apes have features in common because all descended by blood from one more recent ancestor, before Darwin said it.

Was it the government or the banks that encouraged them not to report that?

The government abruptly changed the accounting rules to what bloggers sarcastically called "Mark to Myth" so that what was happening would not appear in the balance sheets of financial institutions, so the government was telling the banks not to report that, so presumably also telling the papers not to report that either.

I have two different theories about this.

One theory is that the USA was in deep trouble generally, and the Bush administration was looking for scams to temporarily boost us out of it. Clinton had successfully pulled off the dot.com scam, which got a lot of foreigners to "invest" in US companies, bringing in foreign exchange to the USA which we did not have to pay back when the dot.com boom went bust. Bush couldn't do the same scam over again, so he pushed loans against US housing as far as it would go. The theory is that the Bush administration knew it was a scam and they arranged the rules to make it look less like a scam because they needed the foreign exchange and had no legitimate way to get it. When they ran out of reasonable housing loans to peddle they encouraged the industry to continue to unreasonable housing loans. And when the whole thing fell apart they tried to say that the foreigners had just lost their money, no way to get it back,

The trouble with that theory is that the US government, like the Irish government, and unlike the Icelandic government, took on the debts that Fannie and Freddy had run up in the course of making loans to the politically connected and to key voting blocks, and did so equally under Bush and Obama, instead of telling the lenders that they had loaned to private entities, these entities were now broke, "so screw you".

The second theory is that the Bush administration was mostly clueless about what was going on. They believed the banking industry. They did what the banking industry wanted.

The trouble with this theory is massive and direct intervention into the banking industry by both Clinton and Bush, to make it do these things, in particular state sponsored takeovers of politically incorrect banks by enthusiastically politically correct banks such as Washington Mutual.

The banks and financial institutions that lost the most money, in particular the management of Countrywide and Washington Mutual, and much of their advertising material, sounded more like diversity sensitivity trainers, than bankers.  That is the government pushing bankers around, not bankers pushing the government around.

We saw wholesale replacement of bankers who failed to be sufficiently enthusiastic about poltical correctness, with bankers gung ho for poltiical correctness, in particular, and especially, Washington Mutual.


It was all caused by giving Nobel prizes to Marie Curie:

A financial system requires truth, and those who lie must be punished.  Affirmative action requires lies, and those who tell the truth must be punished.  When the two meet, it is like matter and anti matter.  They annihilate each other.

When they gave out Nobel prizes on the basis of race, sex, nationality, and political alignment rather than accomplishment, it became necessary to give out degrees on the basis of race, sex, and political alignment, rather than knowledge of the material, otherwise the discrepancy in degrees would be "discrimination", and if anyone was allowed to doubt that the discrepancy was discrimination, those with affirmative action Nobel prizes would be exposed to ridicule.

When they gave out degrees on the basis of race, sex, and political alignment, it became necessary to give out jobs on the basis of race, sex, and political connection, rather than ability to do the job, otherwise the failure of those with affirmative action degrees would be "discrimination", and if anyone was allowed to doubt that the discrepancy was discrimination, the degrees would be exposed to ridicule.

When they gave out jobs on the basis of race, sex, and political connection, it became necessary to give out a middle class lifestyle on the basis of race and sex, otherwise the failure of those with affirmative action jobs to live a middle class lifestyle would be "discrimination", and if anyone was allowed to doubt that the discrepancy was discrimination, the jobs would be exposed to ridicule.

When they gave out a middle class lifestyle on the basis of race and sex, the recipients still did not live a middle class lifestyle, so the money was not repaid.

So rather than ridicule Marie Curie's Nobel prizes, the government took on a trillion dollars of debt.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 04:26:37 pm by sam »

J Thomas on May 18, 2011, 06:37:47 am

If that's what he was focused upon at that time in his career, why the hell wasn't he assigned to the Army's Intelligence and Security Command, where his "special insight" into the Islamic whackjob mindset might have been far more effectively exploited?

You're asking why the US Army doesn't make better staffing decisions?

How long has the Army been notorious for bad choices about who to send where?

J Thomas on May 18, 2011, 07:36:03 am

I knew there was a crisis on.  So did lots of other people..  I am sure I could have proven it.

You certainly could have proven it to your satisfaction. Could you prove it to their satisfaction in 2 minutes on TV?

If I was a talking head on TV in early 2006 I would have said:  

"Credit default swap prices are bets on debt failing to be repaid.  The current price of swaps shows that the smart money doubts that many mortgages are going to be repaid.  There are some trillions of dollars of mortgages and mortgage backed securities held by financial institutions - which are therefore walking dead, because what they own is not worth much."

And in 2006, wouldn't most of your TV audience have gone "Huh? Credit default swap prices? Never heard of it"? They would have understood that you thought that a lot of financial institutions were in trouble.

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Debts are backed by trust, property, income and faith  Trust had collapsed, property was collapsing, and the market prices of debt based instruments in the less regulated markets showed it.  

A financial business typically owns a lot promises by other people that they will be paid, and makes a lot of promises to other people to pay them.  So we were seeing a whole pile of promises that officially supposedly had value, but which were backed by other promises that those markets less subject to government regulation rated as worthless crap.

That's clearly said! Well done!

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The underlying cause of the problem is that the typical purchaser of a million dollar house was a no-hablo-english wetback, whose job consisted of showing up a home depot for day labor.  I saw those purchasers.

That actually was not so. Those were a fairly small minority, not the typical buyer. The story I heard was that they were important beyond their numbers, because profits on the tranche deals were not all that large, so a small percentage of failures made the deals unprofitable.

Also, it was not obvious how many they were and how they were spread, so the whole market suddenly looked risky to the suckers who had still been buying.

Also, like a Ponzi scheme the whole structure depended on growth. People who were considered good credidt risks were taking out money on their houses to maintain their consumption rates, or upgrading to more expensive houses on the assumption that the value would keep going up. Financial types were making money on the churn. But a company that bought and sold mortgage tranches which suddenly couldn't sell them, was in about the position of a bank that suddenly owned a lot of houses. It makes its money off the flow, and when the flow stops its stock in trade is toxic to it even if it's worth a lot of money on paper. Bankers tend to make bad loans particularly when they run out of good loans to make.

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Affirmative action meant lending to myth.  Mythical credit led to mythical balance sheets, which led to Mark-to-Myth accounting.

This worked as long as prices kept rising, so that houses could be flipped.  Each time the house was flipped the mortgage got paid off, and prices kept rising as long as they could find warm (though frequently dead drunk) bodies to sign the papers.  Once the music stopped, however, you had mortgages backed by grossly overpriced depreciating houses occupied by non English speaking wetbacks with no regular employment.

Or even laid-off professionals who suddenly had no income stream to service their debts.

I think you and I mostly agree about this, with some difference in emphasis.  Either of us could be right about the importance of the ethnic stuff, and the results would come out about the same.

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Surely they occasionally interviewed some professional economist who said what you say, who got his minute in.

If they interviewed a professional economist, and he had said what I just said, he would never be employed again

Lots of professional economists have tenure. And they could say most of what you say without the racism, which is not really central to the point. Also, they could interview investment advisors etc. There's usually a market for stock-pickers who say the system is about to collapse -- not as big a market as that for the ones who say it's about to boom, but there aren't as many touts around to split that smaller market, either.

So anyway they did interview those people, didn't they? I was not watching those shows myself. Were you? The ones I watched with my father traditionally included someone who said everything was about to go bad, though his details about the collapse varied.

The government abruptly changed the accounting rules to what bloggers sarcastically called "Mark to Myth" so that what was happening would not appear in the balance sheets of financial institutions, so the government was telling the banks not to report that, so presumably also telling the papers not to report that either.

Did the government change the accounting rules because it wanted the banks to do what they were doing, or because bankers told it to do that and it complied? Once we are willing to consider conspiracy theories, how can we falsify them?

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I have two different theories about this.

One theory is that the USA was in deep trouble generally, and the Bush administration was looking for scams to temporarily boost us out of it. .... The theory is that the Bush administration knew it was a scam and they arranged the rules to make it look less like a scam because they needed the foreign exchange and had no legitimate way to get it. When they ran out of reasonable housing loans to peddle they encouraged the industry to continue to unreasonable housing loans. And when the whole thing fell apart they tried to say that the foreigners had just lost their money, no way to get it back,

The trouble with that theory is that the US government, like the Irish government, and unlike the Icelandic government, took on the debts that Fannie and Freddy had run up in the course of making loans to the politically connected and to key voting blocks, and did so equally under Bush and Obama, instead of telling the lenders that they had loaned to private entities, these entities were now broke, "so screw you".

Sure, but that fits. Of course they paid off the politically connected and key voting blocks. But how many of the foreigners did they pay off? Only the ones who were politically connected ... and so we sucked the foreign investors until our crisis expanded to them.... It isn't the only possible explanation, but is it incompatible with the evidence?

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The second theory is that the Bush administration was mostly clueless about what was going on. They believed the banking industry. They did what the banking industry wanted.

The trouble with this theory is massive and direct intervention into the banking industry by both Clinton and Bush, to make it do these things, in particular state sponsored takeovers of politically incorrect banks by enthusiastically politically correct banks such as Washington Mutual.

If they were doing what some of the financial institutions wanted, and pressuring others, then doesn't it make sense that the bankers etc they forced into bad positions would go broke, while the bankers they obeyed would survive and expand? It's hard for me to believe that the Bush administration was actively supporting PC giveaways because they were PC. But I could believe they did it to help their friends and hurt their enemies.

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The banks and financial institutions that lost the most money, in particular the management of Countrywide and Washington Mutual, and much of their advertising material, sounded more like diversity sensitivity trainers, than bankers.  That is the government pushing bankers around, not bankers pushing the government around.

Again, if it can be conspiracy theory time pleeze, the banks that were victimized would be different ones from the banks that won.

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It was all caused by giving Nobel prizes to Marie Curie:

Or maybe it was evolution in action -- survival of the most politically connected.

That's a conspiracy theory and I don't right off see how to test it. I can't say it's definitely true because I don't have the evidence, the evidence ought to be secret. If I can find the proof and point to it then the conspirators were utterly incompetent.

So it's possible that you are right and I am wrong, and it was all caused by giving the Nobel prize to Marie Curie.



sam on May 18, 2011, 01:22:15 pm
If I was a talking head on TV in early 2006 I would have said:  

"Credit default swap prices are bets on debt failing to be repaid.  The current price of swaps shows that the smart money doubts that many mortgages are going to be repaid.  There are some trillions of dollars of mortgages and mortgage backed securities held by financial institutions - which are therefore walking dead, because what they own is not worth much."

And in 2006, wouldn't most of your TV audience have gone "Huh? Credit default swap prices? Never heard of it"?

Most of the things on the news are news because you never heard of them until they mattered.

You are arguing that the press omitted to report important stuff because of lack of popular demand to report it - yet there are certain things that you yourself are afraid to say.  I keep taunting you with the Lamarck issue.  If you dare not speak the truth on that, there are a thousand other things too politically incorrect for you to say, in which case there are a hundred thousand things that are too politically incorrect for the press to say.

I chose the obscure Lamarck example, out of thousands of similarly obscure issues, because the truth on that one is not deniable.   The history of science is a history of what scientists wrote, so when science history is rewritten, we can easily find out the real history of science by reading the books and articles written by the original scientists,  So anyone who is unable to admit the truth on that one, dare not admit the truth on a thousand matters he knows to be true.

And if you cannot defy that rewrite, you cannot defy any rewrite, and if history is being rewritten, so is current events, history as it happens.

And that the financial crisis came out of the blue in late 2007, early 2008, is a lie.  It was a great big crisis the day that credit default swap prices on mortgages fell, and they fell in late 2005, early 2006, signifying massive loss of trust, loss of the trust necessary to operate the financial system, a great big crisis that the government and media covered up.

The underlying cause of the problem is that the typical purchaser of a million dollar house was a no-hablo-english wetback, whose job consisted of showing up a home depot for day labor.  I saw those purchasers.

That actually was not so. Those were a fairly small minority, not the typical buyer.

Towards the end, they were the overwhelming majority of the purchasers that I saw.

Further, the banks that busted most horribly, were those that loudly advertised their political correctness and had promised, Soviet Style, to overfulfill the CRA, in particular and most notably, Washington Mutual.

The story I heard was that they were important beyond their numbers, because profits on the tranche deals were not all that large, so a small percentage of failures made the deals unprofitable.

Of mortgage loans made towards the end of 2005 in California, very few ever had a single payment made on them.  The vast majority of loans made in that period failed completely. If any payments at all were paid, such payments were rare.  The failure rate was not a small percentage, but was indistinguishable from 100%.  This was because people with credit to lose dropped out of the California market, so that almost all loans that were made, were made to people with no credit.

Affirmative action meant lending to myth.  Mythical credit led to mythical balance sheets, which led to Mark-to-Myth accounting.

This worked as long as prices kept rising, so that houses could be flipped.  Each time the house was flipped the mortgage got paid off, and prices kept rising as long as they could find warm (though frequently dead drunk) bodies to sign the papers.  Once the music stopped, however, you had mortgages backed by grossly overpriced depreciating houses occupied by non English speaking wetbacks with no regular employment.

Or even laid-off professionals who suddenly had no income stream to service their debts.

Observe where the defaults are.  The defaults are proportional to the number of non asian minorities in a suburb.  Lily white suburbs have less than one percent of the defaults of suburbs with large minorities.  The financial crisis is a crisis of loans non asian minorities.

Surely they occasionally interviewed some professional economist who said what you say, who got his minute in.

If they interviewed a professional economist, and he had said what I just said, he would never be employed again

Lots of professional economists have tenure.

So did James Watson.

And they could say most of what you say without the racism.

Even today, when the crisis is admitted, no American economist can say what the Israeli Central bank says of the US crisis and US Central Bank, which Israeli account merely refers to the "poor", without specifically mentioning that the poor in question are not poor white males, and, until late 2007, the crisis could not be mentioned at all, let alone any account of its causes given.

It is not only forbidden to mention differences between races, or evidence that affirmative action is having cataclysmic results, it is forbidden to mention a thousand things, many of which have no direct connection to race.

A thousand things connected directly and indirectly to the crisis have become unmentionable, in part because the crisis was in America in large part a racial crisis, in part because it was a crisis of government incompetence and corruption.

Race and sex are the biggest reasons for facts disappearing, but far from the only ones.

Sure, but that fits. Of course they paid off the politically connected and key voting blocks. But how many of the foreigners did they pay off?

All of them that purchased crap rated AA or higher.  The official ratings were made true by the government.

If [the government] were doing what some of the financial institutions wanted, and pressuring others, then doesn't it make sense that the bankers etc they forced into bad positions would go broke

It is plausible that Washington was doing what Goldman Sach wanted, but the people that pissed away all this money were doing what Washington wanted, and doing it with loudly proclaimed enthusiasm.  The money was, for the most part, pissed away by Fanny, Freddie, Washington Mutual, and Countrywide.

Goldman and Sach was not where the money was lost.  Washington Mutual and Countrywide were the biggest cheerleaders for the CRA, got the most regulatory favor, and went bust the most catastrophically.  The mountains of disappearing money, disappeared to the extent that bankers were doing what Washington wanted, not to the extent that Washington was doing what Goldman and Sachs wanted.

It may well be that Goldman and Sach were largely responsible for the government decision to bail out the financial institutions, rather than let private lenders take the hit, responsible for too-big-to-fail, but they were not responsible for the failure.  Washington Mutual, Fannie, Freddie, and the rest are responsible for the failure.

Goldman and Sach were and are pulling strings in Washington, but if you look at who is being sued for lying about mortgages, the people who are being sued were issuing noble lies that Washington wanted to hear.

Goldman and Sach are being sued for unloading dud mortgage backed securities onto their customers, stuff that they had purchased before the crisis exploded, and had to get rid of at a loss while some people were still in denial about the crisis, so unloaded this crap at a loss onto their customers, which customers took a much bigger loss than Goldman and Sach.  But who wrote those mortgages?  It was not Goldman and Sach, who were lied to as much as anyone, and continued to believe, or pretend to believe, the lies long after most less well connected investors had panicked and fled.

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The banks and financial institutions that lost the most money, in particular the management of Countrywide and Washington Mutual, and much of their advertising material, sounded more like diversity sensitivity trainers, than bankers.  That is the government pushing bankers around, not bankers pushing the government around.

Again, if it can be conspiracy theory time pleeze, the banks that were victimized would be different ones from the banks that won.

Countrywide and Washington Mutual did not win. The banks that lost the most were Countrywide and Washington Mutual.

Follow the money:  Where was the money pissed away?  It was pissed away by Freddie, Fanny, Washington Mutual, and Countrywide bank, all of whom were great big losers, were visibly being pushed around to do the government's poltiical bidding, and all of whom suffered dire consequences thereby.

Countrywide and Washington Mutual went bust, and are responsible for the major portion of the worthless mortgage backed securities that the treasury purchased at face value.  They did the government's bidding, and were punished for obeying.


J Thomas on May 18, 2011, 05:23:22 pm
If I was a talking head on TV in early 2006 I would have said:  

"Credit default swap prices are bets on debt failing to be repaid.  The current price of swaps shows that the smart money doubts that many mortgages are going to be repaid.  There are some trillions of dollars of mortgages and mortgage backed securities held by financial institutions - which are therefore walking dead, because what they own is not worth much."

And in 2006, wouldn't most of your TV audience have gone "Huh? Credit default swap prices? Never heard of it"?

Most of the things on the news are news because you never heard of them until they mattered.

That's true. And one result of that is that when you try to explain them in 2 minutes they don't understand your jargon.

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You are arguing that the press omitted to report important stuff because of lack of popular demand to report it - yet there are certain things that you yourself are afraid to say.  I keep taunting you with the Lamarck issue.  If you dare not speak the truth on that, there are a thousand other things too politically incorrect for you to say,in which case there are a hundred thousand things that are too politically incorrect for the press to say.

I keep passing you up on the Lamarck issue because when I looked at it I saw that you had this weird interpretation that's all your own, that I'm convinced you will not be argued out of. You have argued it at great length with other people, none of whom were ever convinced and none of them convinced you. I see no profit in arguing with you about your personal little fetish, that you will never concede on.

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And that the financial crisis came out of the blue in late 2007, early 2008, is a lie.  It was a great big crisis the day that credit default swap prices on mortgages fell, and they fell in late 2005, early 2006, signifying massive loss of trust, loss of the trust necessary to operate the financial system, a great big crisis that the government and media covered up.

Yes, and wasn't the Bush administration's stand that "Nobody could have seen this coming", just like nobody could have seen 9/11 coming or Katrina etc. That was a popular conceit at the time. Everything was going to stay the same until something happened that nobody could have seen coming. And the public bought it.

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The underlying cause of the problem is that the typical purchaser of a million dollar house was a no-hablo-english wetback, whose job consisted of showing up a home depot for day labor.  I saw those purchasers.

That actually was not so. Those were a fairly small minority, not the typical buyer.

Towards the end, they were the overwhelming majority of the purchasers that I saw.

That could be. They were nowhere near the majority of owners, but at a time when nobody in his right mind would be buying a house, they could have been the overwhelming majority of buyers then.

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Further, the banks that busted most horribly, were those that loudly advertised their political correctness and had promised, Soviet Style, to overfulfill the CRA, in particular and most notably, Washington Mutual.

Yes. And your point?

The story I heard was that they were important beyond their numbers, because profits on the tranche deals were not all that large, so a small percentage of failures made the deals unprofitable.

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Of mortgage loans made towards the end of 2005 in California, very few ever had a single payment made on them.  The vast majority of loans made in that period failed completely. If any payments at all were paid, such payments were rare.  The failure rate was not a small percentage, but was indistinguishable from 100%.  This was because people with credit to lose dropped out of the California market, so that almost all loans that were made, were made to people with no credit.

I can imagine that. So, the system depended on continuing sales, and when they ran out of decent sales they tried to continue with whatever sales they could. I can see three possibilities there. One is that they were just stupid. A second is that the government was using the sales to foreigners to somewhat balance our hemorrhage in international trade, and the government stupidly encouraged them to do stuff that couldn't work when we ran out of decent trades. A third is that financial institutions who saw a way to take over the whole industry, manipulated the government to get the results they wanted. I don't know how many of those are true. Do you have a fourth idea how it happened?

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If [the government] were doing what some of the financial institutions wanted, and pressuring others, then doesn't it make sense that the bankers etc they forced into bad positions would go broke

It is plausible that Washington was doing what Goldman Sach wanted, but the people that pissed away all this money were doing what Washington wanted, and doing it with loudly proclaimed enthusiasm.  The money was, for the most part, pissed away by Fanny, Freddie, Washington Mutual, and Countrywide.

Goldman and Sach was not where the money was lost.  Washington Mutual and Countrywide were the biggest cheerleaders for the CRA, got the most regulatory favor, and went bust the most catastrophically.  The mountains of disappearing money, disappeared to the extent that bankers were doing what Washington wanted, not to the extent that Washington was doing what Goldman and Sachs wanted.

I see the first. I don't see that Washington doing this was not what Goldman Sachs wanted, or done at their request etc. I don't have evidence one way or the other about that.

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It may well be that Goldman and Sach were largely responsible for the government decision to bail out the financial institutions, rather than let private lenders take the hit, responsible for too-big-to-fail, but they were not responsible for the failure.  Washington Mutual, Fannie, Freddie, and the rest are responsible for the failure.

They made bad decisions, that in hindsight anybody can see. The government gave them a whole lot of rope to continue, and told them to keep using it. Why did the Bush administration keep doing that? Surely not because they wanted to be nice to non-asian minorities. Were they just not paying attention? Did they feel like they were already riding a tiger they couldn't let go of, so they'd just wait until the tiger got home to snuggle with the other tigers? Were they doing what their "friends" insisted?

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Goldman and Sach were and are pulling strings in Washington, but if you look at who is being sued for lying about mortgages, the people who are being sued were issuing noble lies that Washington wanted to hear.

Goldman and Sach are being sued for unloading dud mortgage backed securities onto their customers, stuff that they had purchased before the crisis exploded, and had to get rid of at a loss while some people were still in denial about the crisis, so unloaded this crap at a loss onto their customers, which customers took a much bigger loss than Goldman and Sach.  But who wrote those mortgages?  It was not Goldman and Sach, who were lied to as much as anyone, and continued to believe, or pretend to believe, the lies long after most less well connected investors had panicked and fled.

Yes? So, G&S were caught by surprise too, but cut their losses by fooling their customers. Who won?

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The banks and financial institutions that lost the most money, in particular the management of Countrywide and Washington Mutual, and much of their advertising material, sounded more like diversity sensitivity trainers, than bankers.  That is the government pushing bankers around, not bankers pushing the government around.

Again, if it can be conspiracy theory time pleeze, the banks that were victimized would be different ones from the banks that won.

Countrywide and Washington Mutual did not win. The banks that lost the most were Countrywide and Washington Mutual.

Follow the money:  Where was the money pissed away?  It was pissed away by Freddie, Fanny, Washington Mutual, and Countrywide bank, all of whom were great big losers, were visibly being pushed around to do the government's poltiical bidding, and all of whom suffered dire consequences thereby.

Countrywide and Washington Mutual went bust, and are responsible for the major portion of the worthless mortgage backed securities that the treasury purchased at face value.  They did the government's bidding, and were punished for obeying.

Yes, exactly. So, who won? Not them.

Where did the money go that was lost? Did it go to poor negros and latinos? Not particularly. They got to live in fancy houses for awhile. They didn't get to keep the money.

Did it go to the bankers who sold them the houses? No.

Did it go to foreigners who sold stuff to Americans and kept the money rather than buy stuff from Americans? No, that was happening but not from this. This scam did give America the appearance of wealth up until 2006 or so, though, so the foreigners kept selling to us at prices we could afford.

What happened to the money that was lost? It was bankers money! It came out of nowhere, and then when it couldn't be paid back it disappeared again! But the money that the legislature agreed to pay for it all, was real money, or as close to real as the US government gets. Who won?

The individuals who sold houses to negroes etc that otherwise could not be sold won. They got to flip those houses one last time. Goldman Sachs etc won -- they survived the banking crisis and wound up with considerably more control of the US economy than before. It's a sinking economy but not a capsizing one, and they own a much bigger slice of it. Did anybody else win?

sam on May 19, 2011, 01:22:41 am
If I was a talking head on TV in early 2006 I would have said:  

"Credit default swap prices are bets on debt failing to be repaid.  The current price of swaps shows that the smart money doubts that many mortgages are going to be repaid.  There are some trillions of dollars of mortgages and mortgage backed securities held by financial institutions - which are therefore walking dead, because what they own is not worth much."

And in 2006, wouldn't most of your TV audience have gone "Huh? Credit default swap prices? Never heard of it"?

Most of the things on the news are news because you never heard of them until they mattered.

That's true. And one result of that is that when you try to explain them in 2 minutes they don't understand your jargon.

Once it became permissible to acknowledge that the crisis was happening, everyone used the term "credit default swap"

And I explained the jargon:  A credit default swap is a bet on whether a debt will be repaid.  If lots of people doubt debts will be repaid, financial Armageddon approaches.

You are arguing that the press omitted to report important stuff because of lack of popular demand to report it - yet there are certain things that you yourself are afraid to say.  I keep taunting you with the Lamarck issue.  If you dare not speak the truth on that, there are a thousand other things too politically incorrect for you to say,in which case there are a hundred thousand things that are too politically incorrect for the press to say.

I keep passing you up on the Lamarck issue because when I looked at it I saw that you had this weird interpretation that's all your own,

Before 1972, it was the standard interpretation http://books.google.com/books?id=-KWNBFhnjgoC&pg=PA52 - because it is what Lamarck plainly said at considerable, indeed quite excessive, length:

Who are you going to believe:  Official authority, or your own lying eyes. 

I harp on this boring minor and obscure issue, because the truth is undeniable, yet after 1972 scarcely anyone dares admit it, revealing they are terrified to speak the truth.  When authority rewrites other parts of history, hard to prove what really happened, but science history is the history of what scientists actually wrote, so with rewrites of science history it is easy to prove that official history lies, easy to prove that conformity to the official line is abject grovelling fear, not sincerity.

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O'Brien held up his left hand, its back towards Winston, with the thumb hidden and four fingers extended.
"How many fingers am I holding up, Winston"
"Four"
"And if the party says it is not four but five—then how many?"

To which Thomas dutifully replies "five", revealing his abject terror of authority.

I have given you the relevant page numbers from Lamarck before, here they are again: H Elliot's translation of Lamarck's book http://www.archive.org/details/zoologicalphilos00lama, pages 19 to 38, Lamarck discusses families.  Pages 38 to 39, he explains them by common descent.  Page 179, he gives a family tree of the animals.

Anyone who doubts that Lamarck said what he plainly said (that similarities between species are the result of descent by blood or sap from a common ancestor, and close similarities the result of descent from a recent common ancestor) and said it before Darwin said it, is like Winston Smith after he had been interrogated by O'Brien

After you have checked Lamarck, tell me, Winston Smith, how many fingers am I holding up?

By proclaiming the official story on this minor point, you reveal your abject grovelling terror of authority on every point.

Further, the banks that busted most horribly, were those that loudly advertised their political correctness and had promised, Soviet Style, to overfulfill the CRA, in particular and most notably, Washington Mutual.

Yes. And your point?

That this crisis was a crisis of state directed lending, especially affirmative action lending.

I don't see that Washington doing this was not what Goldman Sachs wanted, or done at their request etc. I don't have evidence one way or the other about that.

Goldman and Sach were heavily exposed to affirmative action loans.  Late in 2006, after most of the crowd had already bolted, they decided that they had better get the hell out too, and unloaded as much as they could onto their customers, in a gross breach of faith and legality.  But they were still exposed, with their remaining exposure hedged by AIG.  So the bailout of AIG was effectively a bailout of Goldman and Sach.

But the reason they needed to be bailed out is that they had been doing what the government wanted them to do, sucking down affirmative action loans, and they continued sucking the government's dick and swallowing while most ordinary investors were panicking and rushing to the exits.

Yes, the government is in Goldman and Sach's pocket, but Goldman and Sach is also in the governments pocket.

They made bad decisions, that in hindsight anybody can see.

They made bad decision that one hell of a lot of investors could see were bad in 2005 December, bad decisions that the government piously proclaimed were good decisions, which decisions, alas, the market was failing to make due to irrational animal spirits that made it less wise than our wise government and its wise regulators.

The government gave them a whole lot of rope to continue, and told them to keep using it.

Exactly so.

Why did the Bush administration keep doing that? Surely not because they wanted to be nice to non-asian minorities.

Surely because they did want to be nice to non asian minorities.  To suggest that this course was leading to disaster, that the loans were not going to be repaid was raaaaciiiist, and no one wanted to be racist.

We had official government paper after official paper, one after another, telling bankers that it was safe to lower credit requirements to get more minority loans, telling them that anyone who failed to do so was sacrificing a good safe profit for irrational racism, and that such irrational racism was just cause for discrimination lawsuits.  The only safe harbor to avoid charges of racism was to abandon all credit standards.  The government cajoled the banks, and threatened the banks, and installed fellow true believers in the banks.  The government was still campaigning for more affirmative action lending and lower credit standards even after everything started to collapse.

Were they just not paying attention?

Much the way you fail to pay attention to what Lamarck actually said.  Anyone who paid attention to reality, anyone who doubted, anyone who failed to uphold the faith, was apt to be punished for heresy, and punished with terrible severity.

Where did the money go that was lost? Did it go to poor negros and latinos?

A lot of it did: A poor latino with no job, no credit rating, and no assets buys a house for two hundred thousand dollars, no money down, sells it a few months later for three hundred thousand.  He buys another house no money down for four hundred thousand, no money down, sells it for six hundred thousand.  He buys another house for a million dollars, no money down - oops, seems that the music has ended.  He cannot sell the house, but lives in it rent free for a year before the foreclosure guys evict him, and he has three hundred thousand dollars in his pocket.  Meanwhile his million dollar mortgage has been sold from one sucker to the next, and eventually to the biggest sucker of them all, the US treasury, to be paid for by mostly white taxpayers.

Of course some of these guys were not too bright, and attempted to fix up their overpriced houses so that they could sell them at a profit, in which case they quite possibly pissed away most of the three hundred thousand investing in an underwater house, when they could have more usefully and productively spent it on wine, women, and song.

And that is where the money went:  It was blown, and continues to blown, trying to make people act middle class by giving them free money.  As I said, the problem began with Marie Curie - trying to make people equal, who just really are inferior.  Women cannot do science, and Blacks and Latinos cannot save and invest.  And when they try to invest some of the free money they scored, they do up an underwater house with pink paint and inappropriate marble.

They got to live in fancy houses for awhile. They didn't get to keep the money.

Except at the very end, they got to keep quite a lot of the money.

The individuals who sold houses to negroes etc that otherwise could not be sold won.

It is probable that white folks got most of the affirmative action money, just as they got most of Mike Tyson's money.  They usually do.  My hypothetical Latino borrows a million dollars, but somehow only three hundred thousand dollars stick to him, and it does not stick to him for long.   But that was not the government's intent.  Nor, however, was it the government's intent that Latinos would take the money and run.The government's intent was that these Latinos and Negroes would become middle class, live in the houses, and make payments on the houses, and fill the houses full of nice stuff, that they would come to act like people who actually are credit worthy - which conspicuously failed to happen.

As I said, Marie Curie:  Pretending that Marie Curie had done very important science did not result in women actually doing real science, nor did giving lots of women fake science degrees  result in women actually doing real science, nor did giving lots of women fake science jobs result in women actually doing real science,  and similarly pretending that lots of Latinos were credit worthy did not induce the behavior characteristic of people who are actually credit worthy.  They did not make payments, they did not live in the houses for very long, they did not fill them full of nice stuff.

Yet we are still giving women fake science jobs, and still pretending that lots of Latinos are credit worthy.  Pretending that lots of Latinos are credit worthy is however much more expensive than giving women fake science jobs.

 

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